TeliaSonera interested in Polkomtel; Exatel attracts interest from ‘several’ bidders

4 Nov 2010

Scandinavian telecoms giant TeliaSonera is reportedly interested in acquiring Polish wireless network operator Polkomtel, which operates under the Plus brand. Polkomtel, which claims around 14 million customers, is expected to attract offers in the region of EUR4 billion (USD7.01 billion). Other interested parties reported to have begun looking at the company include TPG and Blackstone Group, which are believed to be working on a joint bid, Apax Partners, CVC Capital, Bain Capital and Turkish cellco Turkcell.

Polkomtel’s shareholders currently include Poland’s largest power group, PGE Polska Grupa Energetyczna; oil refiner PKN Orlen; copper miner KGHM Polska Miedz; coal miner Weglokoks and UK-based Vodafone. Observers have warned that the sale process may not be straightforward, due in part to the fragmented nature of the company’s ownership.

Meanwhile, PGE has said it has received ‘several’ bids for a 95% stake in its telecoms arm Exatel. ‘After a preliminary review, selected bidders will be allowed to perform due diligence,’ PGE’s press office said. The energy company did not name the bidders for the stake, which has been valued at about PLN700 million (USD250 million), although local telco GTS said later that it had submitted an offer. Other telcos, including Netia and Polkomtel, had said they were interested in the stake, but declined to comment on whether they had actually filed bids.

Poland, Exatel, Plus (Polkomtel), Telia Company